10 Powerful Self-Improvement Tips

How to make sure you keep improving and growing.


Life is a constant growing experience. Or at least, it should be. I’m the kind of person who likes to have had it all planned out – what I want to do, how I want to do it, when I want it done by.. Despite that, I often have personal goals that go unfulfilled for years before I find the time to pursue them. It’s not that I couldn’t fit them in, it’s just that they continually take a back-seat to watching a movie or hanging with friends. I mean, who really wants to spend hundreds more hours in front of a computer learning the latest in PHP coding (yes, that’s on my list), anyway??

10 Powerful Self-Improvement Tips

In trying to figure out how to motivate myself to fit it all in — and still have time leftover for relaxing — I came up with a list that could be helpful for my fellow Urbanette’s. If you’ve made a personal vow to get your bum off that chair and better yourself for the sake of yourself and society, here are a few things to keep in mind:

Make a commitment. Most people are afraid of commitment, but what’s a vow without one? Dedicating yourself to making a change is half the battle.

Cultivate new habits. Wake up ten minutes earlier, go eco-friendly when shopping, make a daily Top 5 to-do list, and take the stairs. Make sure this new set of habits includes the kind that are good for you. If you have trouble remembering them, set calendar reminders, put post-it notes around your apartment, make lists, or get people to remind you. Once you’ve made it through 21 days with your new routine, it will become a habit.

Get rid of the bad habits. Quit smoking, staying up late, biting your nails, procrastinating, making snide comments, and everything else that’s evil. I know it’s easier said than done, but you know yourself best, so you’ll know what will work. Not getting to bed on time is my personal worst bad habit. I always want to watch that ‘one more episode’ and I pay for it the next morning. If you’ve got the same issue, here are 10 hacks that have helped me get better sleep.

10 Powerful Self-Improvement Tips

Exercise. Few things are better for your mood, sex drive, energy and brain than regular exercise. Figure out what you enjoy, whether it’s riding around on your bicycle, spin class, lifting weights, yoga or pilates, and do it for an hour three times per week. It’s an investment in your health and happiness.

Learn how to cook. If you already know how, then learn to do it well! Try cooking some of these delicious vegan recipes; they can inspire you and they’re healthy. You’ll eventually be known by your friends’ children as that awesome aunt who makes the most creative dishes. Then you can throw saucy dinners, lunches, and brunches at your place. You will soon discover the rewards of cooking. It’s a hobby, a way to stay healthy, something to show off at dinner parties, and a refuge when things get messy at work and at school.

Learn about health. If you’re on pharmaceuticals, do some research and find a way to get off them as soon as possible. Pick up some books about herbal medicine, essential oils, and health. Learn how your body (and your microbiome) works so you can make it last longer.

Publish a blog or journal. If you’re not a good writer, keeping a journal will help you keep track of your progress and your cheat days. If you’re a good writer, and want to write but don’t want to dedicate the time to start your own blog, you can contribute articles to publications that accept guest posts, like Urbanette. I find that blogs open to the public receive loads of positive feedback and encouragement. If you do decide to start a personal blog or vlog, don’t mind the haters. Just carry on.

Once you’ve made it through 21 days with your new routine, it will become a habit.

These suggestions form the foundation you’ll need to keep yourself focused. Here’s another list of things you can try to improve your marketability:

Read. If textbooks, newspapers and journals bore you to sleep, explore the alternatives. News blogs, op-eds, and social media offer interesting ways to keep yourself informed of what’s currently happening. It also gives you tidbits of information that you can use as conversation starters.

10 Powerful Self-Improvement Tips

Study another language. Sure, you may know English and belong to the biggest country that speaks it, but how do you think you’ll communicate with locals when you’re on a trip abroad? Try learning Spanish or French. Learning a new language teaches you perseverance. It also sharpens your memory, especially when it comes to vocabulary and syntax. Perhaps most importantly, it teaches you to think critically about what you say before you say it.

When I started spending a lot of my time in France and Switzerland, I found that I could get along with minimal French, but learning the local language has become a priority of mine, as I want to communicate with locals on a deeper level. I’ve been using apps and free online courses to help me learn.

Learning a new language teaches you perseverance and helps sharpen your memory.

Develop an attitude. A good one, that is. Try being nice to everyone – and by everyone, I mean all other people outside your work zone and circle of loved ones. Always carry a smile on your face and be courteous to others, especially towards the elderly. Nobody likes being treated badly. Mind your manners and speak with respect, because even bitches hate bitches.

You are already a masterpiece to begin with. You’ve made it this far in your career and relationships, but there’s always room for more, don’t you think?

What are some ways you’d like to improve yourself, and how do you plan to go about doing it? 

Avatar of Hilary Rowland

A writer, artist, and designer since she was young enough to put pencil to paper, Hilary taught herself code and created Urbanette when she was a teenager. Currently, she lives in Monte Carlo, but spent the past decade living in NYC, still considers herself a New Yorker, and visits regularly. She's always traveling, looking for hot new topics, destinations, and life hacks to bring to Urbanette readers.

Reader Discussion: 155 Comments

  1. Avatar of Catherine Schultz

    Catherine Schultz

    Another uplifting article from Urbanette. Please do not stop writing this kind of article.

  2. Avatar of caroline wagstaff

    I never actually thought about improving myself because no one ever said something is not right about me. But this article gives me this idea that even if there is nothing to change, maybe something needs to be improved. I will give this a deep thought.

  3. Avatar of Jonathon Swift

    Jonathon Swift

    Yes, exercise works wonder in our system. When me and my wife exercise, we sure have all the energy in bed. If you know what I mean. Other tips are also helpful. Will share this with my wife.

  4. Avatar of Anna Gibson

    Anna Gibson

    A lot of people say that I have a “bitch resting face”. I laugh at it but more people are telling me that they didn’t want to talk to me because they feel that I am not approachable. So that tells me that maybe there is something I need to change. Then, I started looking at the mirror more often. And I saw that sometimes I do have this serious emotionless face. Then I practiced smiling, every day, each time I look at the mirror. Maybe people would find it weird, but it worked! People started talking to me and then I gained more friends.

    • Avatar of Gertrude Newton

      Gertrude Newton

      People say the same thing to me. But I didn’t give it a thought actually. Now, it makes me want to do what you practiced. Maybe, it will work for me too.

  5. Avatar of Linda Silva

    Linda Silva

    I want to improve the way I interact with people. I am an introvert. It is hard to socialize but I know I need to learn because that’s part of life. I am planning on opening more to my family or closest friends. It could be a long way but it is a start, right?

    • Avatar of Alison Thompson

      Alison Thompson

      Yes, I was an introvert when I was a teenager but worked my self-out of my shelf slowly. It is a long and possibly rough process but believes in yourself that you can do it and you will.

  6. Avatar of Mona Parks

    Mona Parks

    I remember when I was so in love with my ex-boyfriend. I gave everything I could but in the end, we found our separate ways. It was an experience who killed me inside, but also an experience that made me stronger and who I am now. I learned from it and improved myself not for anyone else but for myself.

  7. Avatar of Felicia Blake

    Felicia Blake

    Cooking is not only a skill that women should know how. It’s basic. But I do not belittle those who do not cook. Maybe they just found themselves doing something they think can better them.

  8. Avatar of Ana Selena

    Cooking and baking are my joyful hobbies. It makes me feel good about myself and most especially when people rave about it.

    • Avatar of Francis Armstrong

      Francis Armstrong

      I am a self-taught baker, and this hobby made the way for my family to stick together.

  9. Avatar of Shannon Newman

    Shannon Newman

    Love and peace. Thank you Urbanette for reminding us of these two important things our world need.

  10. Avatar of Maria Wilkins

    Maria Wilkins

    I agree in this article. A lot of good ways to improve ourselves. We just really need to ditch procrastination.

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